Once upon a time, quite a while ago- I wrote about these fantastically haunting photos that had been taken of "Feral Houses" in Detroit. Houses that people had abandoned, and Mother Nature had welcomed back into her arms. I was fascinated by their their decrepit beauty amidst the wild decay. I cannot lie, I wanted in one of those houses. I wanted to explore those houses. I wanted to see- to feel if there were tiny pieces of time left behind-wandering and wondering, whispering what and when and who would ever come back for them.
Fast forward to now. Someone did come back. For one.
Lisa Waud, a florist based in Detroit seemed to have a similar feeling about these houses. And then she had the most amazing, brilliant, beautiful idea. She decided to buy this house and make this house, the Flower House.
Lisa (I am going to call her that, like we are good friends, even though she has no idea who I am.) was inspired by artists Cristo and Jeanne-Claude's massive art displays, in particular a flower wrapped Dior show- (I love this one.) and man, the wheels got to a turnin' and this little (flower) love child came into existence. She, and a handful of other florists, from around the country are going to fill this house lovingly and intentionally with flowers. Each and every room. I mean, come on, right? It is too good! I see this project (this massive, magical project) as an opportunity to thank the house for all it has been, all that it gave and to bring it new life, new love, new beauty- filled completely to the brim. Then after all of this planning, plotting (and perhaps potting- is that too much?) is done, Lisa is going to give her house a party that everyone is invited to. This house that has been lonely for so long will once again be overflowing with all the things a house should hold- laughter, friends, admirers-decoration, conversation, appreciation. She will have friends there again, and feel loved.
Each florist (or team) picked a room they wanted to design in. Now you know, I started daydreaming. What room would I want? The kitchen? The bathroom? The attic? (It would be the latter- in case you were wondering.) What would I fill it with? What story would I want to tell? How would I want whoever saw it to react? What flowers would I use? Oh, these are good good daydreams. (And yes, damnit! I wish I would have known about it earlier...I would have begged to be a part of this. Maybe I still will. I have very little shame.)
Flower House visitors can celebrate with her, (the house) and with them (all the amazing participants) the weekend of October 16th-18th. These images are from a sneak-peak, a preview, a taste of what is to come. There were 40,000 American flowers used for the preview, and in October- the number will rise to 100, 000. (!)
And then, when all of her visitors have left, and her flowers are taken down- Flower House herself will be taken down. Lisa has partnered with Reclaim Detroit, a non-profit group who will be responsibly deconstructing the house- and then re-purposing as much of the materials as possible. And then the land where she stood will become...a flower farm.
I know! Damnit! I am so in love with this project. It makes my heart beat just a little bit faster. I am in awe of what people dream of. Create. Thank you Lisa- for dreaming and daring. For thinking so outside of the (flower) box. I can't wait to see where this grows.